Friday 27 July 2018

New Clutch Cable

The heatwave we are currently having played havoc with my clutch.  Once the car got really hot I found there was a 'notch' when the pedal was about 1" off the floor and I had to push hard to get it past to change gear.   Decided the first thing to try was to swap cables with my spare.   So I did that and the clutch movement, while still heavy, was much smoother.   I was going to keep the old one as a spare, but it had effectively seized so was just junk.   Luckily 1984 Fiat Ducato clutch cables are still available on E-Bay so I bought another one for the spare.

Friday 20 July 2018

Happy Birthday

She has just had her 10th birthday and, coincidentally, has just passed the 20,000 mile point.  Still going strong although clutch release bearing sounds really bad.

Thursday 12 July 2018

Fitted New Nose Cone

Having decided the damage to the nose cone from the garage 'incident' was beyond repair, I was lucky to find a brand new one from Richard Stewart (the founder of Robin Hood Engineering), so today was fitting day.  Not a difficult job but I had to drill 15 holes into it in exactly the same places as the old one
The old and the new

And the new one in place

While I had the nose cone off I also fixed the nearside flasher, it was a corroded bullet connector that needed splitting, cleaning and putting back.  Interesting I tried putting the old fuel pump relay back and the car ran perfectly, so I wonder if it was the same cause, corroded joint ?   Disappointingly, the side lights and back lights have also stopped working so that could be an electrical joint that needs remaking as well.   Perhaps the car is reaching the age when all the joints are too old.  Massive job

Wednesday 11 July 2018

Second Breakdown

Today I experienced my second breakdown in 5 years.   I was with a friend in his Superspec which was handy.

On the journey we were lucky that we saw the A1 was stationary as we drove over it, so we changed our plan and came back through Grantham.   I took the opportunity to fill up at Sainsbury's but when I came to drive away she just wouldn't start.  Cranked at full speed but absolutely nothing happened. Luckily we could push her out of everybody's way to a corner of the forecourt while we discussed it.   

I was also lucky that Andy was there as we could bounce ideas of each other.   We quickly figured out she was not getting any fuel and the fuel pump wasn't running up when I turned on the ignition.   So first check was the fuses but I have replaced all the fuses with ones that have an LED on them that lights up if the fuse has blown.  And none of the LEDs was lit up.   So the next step was the relay, and Andy confirmed he couldn't feel it click when I turned on the ignition.   So I removed the relay and plugged in the horn relay instead and this time he felt the click and the engine burst into life.   So I drove home without a horn    Moral of the story is to carry a spare relay in the car.

So that's my second breakdown and both times I've managed to fix it at the roadside and I haven't had to call out the breakdown service.    Fingers crossed.

Tuesday 10 July 2018

Clutch Cable

Doing a fair amount of driving in this heat wave has raised an interesting problem.   After a long trip I am finding it difficult to select a gear and the clutch has to pressed right to the floor.  However, although the engine coolant temperature stays at 87°C, the engine bay has got appreciably hotter than normal.   I am thinking the clutch cable might be stretching in the heat causing the problem.   So I have tightened the cable up to see if that helps.

Follow up:   Did another 80 miles today and didn't experience the problem.  But the temperature wasn't as high so the engine bay didn't warm up so much.   Might still change the cable though as it is getting on for 5 years old and it is relatively cheap.

Monday 9 July 2018


Not much happening on the technical front as I am too busy using the car during this spell of good weather.

This weekend it was time for the Kimbolton Fayre.   A cracking day out for the family and we took 12 cars there, contributing to the over 900 total.

 And here are a few of the rest